The Birds — Barn swallows, that is

Barn swallows

At this time of year, walking through the barn brings back memories of Hitchcock’s The Birds. Territorial barn swallows dive bomb you, coming so close to your head as you walk down the aisles that

Barn swallows
Two barn swallows trying to decide if they should attack me again.

the breeze of their wings makes your hair fly. I know they’re protecting their nests. But seriously? I’m starting to wear my helmet inside the barn as a safety precaution!

Look carefully at the image at the top of the screen. The one on the upper left hangs in space like an angel. It’s distracting me from the one on the right that’s about to do a flyby. At any given time there are usually four to six of these graceful devils swooping above my head.

Don’t get me wrong. There’s a lot to like about the swallows. They are tremendously good at eating insects (each bird eats about 850 insects every day!). They are beautiful, graceful flyers and they are very protective of their young.

Do you have swallows in your barn?

One thought on “The Birds — Barn swallows, that is

  1. I have five different species of swallows living here with me (barn, tree, Violet-green, cliff, and purple martin). Some live on the outside of the building, some live in the many, many boxes we’ve put up for them, and the barn swallows are inside the shed. At any one time, just swallows alone, mind you, I must have 40 pairs of swallows. (that’s not counting the many other species living here, too five different species of finches, four speices of warblers, western bluebirds, wrens, two species of hummingbirds, barn owls and kestrels. We are, for all intents and purposes, a bird sanctuary. )
    PLEASE understand, they won’t hurt you. My grandfather said barn swallows were good luck, and in my experience, they are. They’ll try and scare you off but it would do a swallow no good to actually come in contact with you.
    Consequently, I have NO BUGS. A bug doesn’st stand a chance. The pine siskins are murder on aphids. The meadowlarks go for grasshoppers. Chickweed never goes to seed as the goldfinches go for it. The barn has no flies…just swallows. So, yes. I have swallows. LOTS of them and happy to have em.

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